03/11/2013 by socialistfight
Socialist Fight Statement on the Sunday Times
witch hunt on Unite
Socialist Fight totally condemns the current witch hunt against Unite and its union organisation in Grangemouth conducted by the Sunday Times. Prime Minister Cameron flagged up the agenda by jibing that Labour was totally in hock to Len McCluskey of Unite – and generally to the trade unions. Driven on by this Miliband then pursued an anti-trade union organisational offensive – including the referral to a police enquiry in an attack centred on the Unite organisational work within the Falkirk constituency and the Labour party’s MP selection process. Now the Sunday Times and others are pursuing this witch hunt with gusto to de-legitimize trade unionism and serve the right-wing agenda. We are fully aware that their target is union organisation itself and we are totally in support of victimized official Stevie Deans and the Unite union organisation in Grangemouth and nationallty.
But in so doing we will not misuse this principled united front tactic as an uncritical defence of all the methods of McCluskey and the Unite bureaucracy, who are in many ways the authors of their own misfortunes, by their refusing to fight Ineos’ attacks on the workers with clarity and steadfastness at Grangemouth. We are with McCluskey and Unite when they fight, or are under assault firstly, as trade union representatives in this way, criticising, when need be, their tactics and their failings but not siding ever in any way with the right wing offensive.
We repudiate the tactics of the Sunday Times in linking the legitimate claims of Jerry Hicks against the conduct of the Unite general secretary incumbent McCluskey during the April 2013 ballot which they are now divisively conflating it with the Falkirk CLP selection process. We assert the legitimate right of Unite to fight to get its policies adopted by the Labour party and, to this end, in getting Unite members to join the local constituency Labour parties and to get candidates adopted who will fight for union policies in parliament. On the evidence we have seen this is all Unite did in Falkirk and is doing in the other constituencies they are involved in.